Propy, the blockchain startup that effectively auctioned an apartment in the Ukraine as an NFT, is taking its real estate technology to U.S. soil.
On a mission to smooth out real-world real estate sales, Propy uses NFTs to close the entire real estate deal online. The NFT itself (or non-fungible token) represent a unique asset and certifies ownership digitally. Propy creates the NFTs that are then attached to the real life property and are bundled with the paperwork and property listing photos along the blockchain.
Its first US listing location: Florida.
According to Propy founder and CEO Natalia Karayaneva, the reason Propy chose Florida for its first U.S.-based real estate sales include a crypto-friendly state government, positive future price growth and demographic statistics, a growing job market and the state’s 0% individual income tax policy.
The sale will happen via blockchain auction, and potential buyers can bid for the property with Ethers – the transactional token that facilitates operations on the Ethereum network. The NFT will be stored within the owner’s crypto wallet and is a DeFi asset that can be borrowed against.
Having documents completed virtually via DocuSign, Propy estimates its platforms can save up to 10 hours of paperwork, per transaction.
According to a Thursday release, the proptech is banking that the interest in real estate from the crypto community will be driven by the common desire to transact easily on-chain using cryptocurrency.
“A crypto holder most likely will invest a small percentage of their returns into any tangible real world asset if the process is crypto-friendly and simple,” said Propy. “This is exactly what the NFT-enabled sales process offers.”
However, Propy did note that NFTs in real estate will likely lean towards the more “collectibles” side of asset purchases before mass adoption. Coined as Trophy real estate, these include properties in super-prime of prime locations, represent a status symbol, a landmark or an iconic building.
“Trophy real estate is incredibly high in demand, but also short in supply. Its risk/return ratio is more optimized than other real estate assets,” Propy said. “The level of pride of ownership is very high, and the purchased price is almost irrespective of the trading potential of the property, just like with other collectibles.”
To date, Propy has raised more than $16 million in venture capital funding and, ahead of Thursday’s news, saw its Coinbase listing bump 227% higher on Jan. 12 alongside a 452% trading volume spike on Jan. 14.